Here's an opportunity for parents to have an evening out alone while their kids attend a program intended to keep them physically and socially active.
The Hill Family Center Y will hold a Youth Night on Saturday, Jan. 7 at 6:30 p.m. at the center, located at 1719 Sykesville Road in Westminster. Kids who attend may enjoy sports, swimming, computer games, crafts and social time with other children. The program is held on the first Saturday of each month.
Hill Family Center Y program director, Adam Martin coordinates Youth Night.
"We take children as young as 3, as long as they are potty trained," Martin said. "The building closes at 7 p.m. so the only others in the building are staff. The 3- to 7-year-old group is more structured. They play games like Duck, Duck, Goose or Mother May I and other games. We do crafts with them in small groups. Then around 8 p.m. the pizza arrives and we have a movie."
Martin said their older group of children — grades three through seven — are entertained apart from the younger set. This group chooses what they want to do for the evening.
"The older kids have free rein," Martin said. "We don't force them to do anything. We usually have a craft going in the lobby. There are Wii and other computer games, swimming and structured games in other parts of the building. The older kids keep their own money and can purchase drinks and pizza if they want. This helps teach them some responsibility."
Children can be picked up at any time during the evening, but must be picked up by 9:30, when the program ends. The cost to parents of $8 per child for the evening does not include the food.
Martin said pizza and a drink costs $2 extra or $3 for two slices of pizza and a drink.
"We do ask that people to be here to drop off kids by 7 p.m., so we can get a count to order pizza," Martin said. "We have a relationship with Pizza Boli's in town. Parents can order for the younger kids but the older kids usually bring their own money."
Martin said the program is open to the public with no difference in cost for nonmembers. They sees more participants during the winter months when kids are more likely to be trapped inside with less to do.
"We have about 75 to 100 participants monthly," he said. "It keeps kids active and gives parents the opportunity to have some needed time alone while their kids are in a safe environment. There are plenty of things to do for all ages. Kids can be social, learn new activities and make new friends."
The program is held on the first Saturday of every month unless there is a holiday that falls on that date
For more information call 410-848-3660 or visit the web site at https://ymaryland.org
Zion United Methodist Church will kick off 2017 with First Saturday Night Bluegrass on Saturday, Jan. 7, from 7 to 9 p.m. inside the church's social hall, located in Shipley.
Church member Dolores Bankert said there is no charge for visitors to enjoy music by the Iron Ridge Bluegrass Band, although the church will take a freewill offering.
Bankert said the popular monthly evening of bluegrass started several years back when a member of the congregation who was into bluegrass music suggested the church turn their existing coffee house night into an evening of bluegrass.
"It's a good event that lots of people talk about. If we are away from the church and mention the [church] name, people say, 'That's the church that has the bluegrass music,'" Bankert said, adding that those who come will see "a lot of friendly faces and people coming early to eat and then to socialize until the program starts. Lots of them have made new friends who they see every month."
Bankert said food and beverages are available for purchase at all First Saturday Night Bluegrass evenings, with the main attraction being their crabcakes.
"We also have barbecue, chicken salad and hot dogs, lots of pie for dessert and soup to warm you up," she said.
The upcoming bluegrass schedule includes the Circa Blue Bluegrass Band on Feb. 4, Ernie Bradley and the Grassy Ridge Band on March 4 and the Carroll County Ramblers on April 1.
The church is located at 2716 Old Washington Road in Shipley, just south of Westminster, off Route 97 at Nicodemus Road.
For more information call 410-857-4444.
Charles Carroll farmers market
Come check out the Charles Carroll farmers and vendors market on Saturday, Jan. 7 from 1 to 4 p.m. The market is now held monthly in the now-closed Charles Carroll Elementary School.
"We want to offer more to a community that doesn't have many services available anymore, since the school closed," said Tara Battaglia, Charles Carroll Rec Council's events coordinator. "The rec council is taking the reins to move forward after the school's closing."
Battaglia said she was treasurer of the Charles Carroll PTA and has been involved with the recreation council for about seven years. She calls her new position as events coordinator the best full-time volunteer job she's ever had.
"It is full time but I love doing it," she said. "It is important to keep the community together. We started the market in October. It's also an opportunity for stay-at-home businesses like LuLaRoe, Jamberry, [crafters] and others to offer their products. It helps small businesses and brings the community together."
The indoor market will be held on the first Saturday of the month in January, February and March. Then, beginning April 1 it will be held every other Saturday for the rest of 2017, boasting a variety of vendors.
"R & R Meats has fresh meat products and fresh eggs," Battaglia said. "They are licensed, and don't use preservatives. Their meats are grass fed. The sage sausage is amazing. We've also had various LuLaRoe consultants, Jamberry, with nail products like nail wraps, polishes and gels that are vegan and environmentally safe. We've had Sit and Stay Crochet with hand crocheted pieces and Simple Things in Life with a lady that makes organic and home based bath salts, scrubs and balms. One lady (Rochelle Moreau) makes name creations. She takes a person's name and all the things they are into and she creates their name [in different materials]. We also have two middle school twins who attended Charles Carroll Elementary. One has handmade jewelry made form bottle caps and her twin sister has gift mugs. The Bonfire Girls of Charles Carroll Rec Council bring baked goods to sell. Another lady — Marilyn Higgins — makes homemade cookies and cupcakes, candies, chocolates and other baked goods. They are very detailed and just gorgeous Whatever Whimsey is her business name."
Battaglia said some also sell yard sale items.
"We are open for everyone," she said. "Anybody can have a table. We have a first-time set-up special that is $5 for [each of] the first three set-ups and after that it is $10. It is an 8-foot [square] space. You bring your own tables and chair."
The market is held inside the Charles Carroll Elementary school building, 3719 Littlestown Pike (Route 97) between Union Mills and Silver Run.
For more information call 443-375-0919
Latest Carroll County News
Lois Szymanski covers Finksburg, Gamber, Pleasant Valley, Reese, Sandymount, Silver Run, Smallwood, Union Mills and Westminster. To contact her call 443-293-7811 or email LoisSzymanski@hotmail.com